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can anyone recommend a good professional quality heat press for a startup small shirt business? not too expensive
 

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I use the Mighty press 15 x 15. It is easy to use has buzzer that sounds so I know my timing is of. Has overhead center pressure knob that makes it easy to set pressure. Bought from coastal business.. great service and free shiping.
 

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Yes it is but if you can get a 16x20 I would. I just found some great oversized 15x19 transfers that would look super but dont have the press for em. I have the other two for travel at shows...they are heavy but manageable.
 

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It depends on what type of business you are going to do. Is the press going to be in one spot (i.e. stationary)? Do you plan to do event productions (i.e. fairs, flea markets, sport tournaments, ...)? How much space do you have for this piece of equipment (i.e. clamshell presses take up less space than a swing-away press)?

A 16" x 20" is always best because it allows for shirts 2 XL and larger where you want the design to be longer than 14.5" (will want to leave some space all the way around the platten to make sure that the heating element covers the design completely). However, these presses usually are pretty heavy and are not the easiest to pick up and move around for event production. For events, you might want to look at the Hix Swingman. It has manual controls for heat and time, but it is pretty light and portable.

Imprintables Warehouse has one of the best clamshells out on the market - Phoenix Phire for the following reasons, but it is not the cheapest:
1. Automatic Release Technology that opens the press when the timer expires
2. Magnetic assistance when closing the press to make it easier on the worker
3. Center pressure adjustment knob above the heating element.
4. Floating heating element to allow for some adjustment on no flat items (i.e. hoodies)
5. All the metal pieces are solid and are not welded. This makes it much stronger down the road.

The automatic release function is great because it allows you to do multiple things and not worry about the shirt burning. Geo Knight offers an automatic release function as an after-market attachment. So, if you can't afford this function now, you can add it on later.

The best thing you can do is go to a trade show or a distributor and really see first-hand the benefits of the different styles of presses. Then, find the one that works best for your business now and at least a couple years down the road. Heat presses usually last a long time unless you buy one of the off-brands that are produced overseas and are being sold for pennies. Stick to the Hix, Geo Knight, Insta, Hotronix and iDek presses. Also, check out eBay and you could get a deal. Good Luck.

Mark
 

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Where do you find out about trade shows or meeting with distributors? I don't think there are any in my area. I am in Syracuse, NY
 

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My geography is horrible, but here is a quick list of some shows / companies that are within a state or two. Some other people might know of closer ones.
- ISS Atlantic City Show (usually the second weekend of March every year
- Imprintables Warehouse (located Masontown, PA - south of Pittsburg)
- Embroidery Extravaganza (Nov. 17th - 18th) in Pittsburg, PA
- Performance Screen (located in Freehold, NJ) - primary screen printing supplies distributor, but sells heat presses
- Wild Side North (Slippery Rock, PA) - primary screen printing supplies distributor, but sells heat presses
- All American Supply (Philadelphia, PA)
- Imprints USA (Philadelphia, PA)
- QLT Imprint Supplies (NY, NY)
- RPL Supplies (Saddlebrook, NJ)
- Dye-Namic Images (Riverton, NJ)

Hope this list helps.
 

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Hi! Iam a newbie . Looking to buy a Phoenix Phire 11X15. Will I be able to plug this into a house outlet ? I live in the USA. I would Hate to pay $9OO, only to find out That I can't plug it in because it is to powerful for house . Does anybody know if that is going to be a problem ? Thanx, Angus
 

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I have the 16X20 and it is plugged into the wall in my living room. No problems! Just ask for the 120 plug in.
 

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Hey Lisa and all. i'm thinking of trying one of these P_PHIRE 16x20 heatpresses. i'm totally new at this mind you. just wondering how long you've had the unit, how it's worked/any problems? also, how long is the warrantee...this didn't seem to be stated on the website. finally, (obviously a newbie question), but, aside from the actual heatpress and logos/shirts, are any other materials necessary to make the shirts. i ask only as i saw packages being sold on the inprintables site...and started wondering what sort of extras might be required. anyway_+ any help would be Greatly appreciated. thanks in advance, eric
 

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I love my phoenixe phire. I would recommend the 16X20 so that you have room to do whatever you may get into. I did have to replace the shocks on it, but they were covered and they sent them right out to me. I bought it October 2006. It is a great machine. I also bought an Epson C88, which has been discontinued, and got a lot of sample transfer paper to try. however, I don't use it much unless it is a white shirt. I don't like how it comes on out light colored shirts other than white. I basically use vinyl. Get samples from Imprintables and Stahls. I really like the stuff Stahl's sells because a lot of it is hot peel, which is much easier and more error free than cold peel. I would also get a sample pack from Transfer express and First Edition and others. I love transfer express. They have great customer service and their transfers are so easy it is crazy. I thought the warranty on my phoenix phire was 4 years.
 

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Thanks for the *quick reply Lisa. i will check into / follow-up on all that you posted. PhoenixPhire sounds all right, so far.
 

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I am a newbie at this, but am interested in knowing whether you can make custom transfers (i.e., indie band images) to put on black t-shirts, with the phoenix phire press? Can you print the artwork from an inkjet printer? What kind is the best kind of printer?

Thanks for your help.
Judy
 

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I am a newbie at this, but am interested in knowing whether you can make custom transfers (i.e., indie band images) to put on black t-shirts, with the phoenix phire press? Can you print the artwork from an inkjet printer? What kind is the best kind of printer?

Thanks for your help.
Judy
You can use images on dark if you have the image as a boxed image like that of a photgraph. If it is not then you should go with plastisol transfers. Lou
 

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Bought Heat Press, Transfers, and T-Shirts..been practising applying the Transfers..having problems..What am I doing wrong, the whole transfer is going on the shirt but not all of the layers of the transfer, therefore the transfer is faint on the T-Shirt..and you can still see the whole transfer faintly on the transfer paper..why is it not ALL coming off onto the shirt??

Hot Split Transfers and Hot Peel Transfers..Company is Dowling Graphics..Heat Press " Black Magic " supposedly Industial Press 20" x 24"..Hope this info helps, with any help anyone can give..getting very frustrated..and Needless to saying going through alot of transfers and T-Shirts
 

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Bought Heat Press, Transfers, and T-Shirts..been practising applying the Transfers..having problems..What am I doing wrong, the whole transfer is going on the shirt but not all of the layers of the transfer, therefore the transfer is faint on the T-Shirt..and you can still see the whole transfer faintly on the transfer paper..why is it not ALL coming off onto the shirt??

Hot Split Transfers and Hot Peel Transfers..Company is Dowling Graphics..Heat Press " Black Magic " supposedly Industial Press 20" x 24"..Hope this info helps, with any help anyone can give..getting very frustrated..and Needless to saying going through alot of transfers and T-Shirts
First thing you need to do is make sure that you are following the instructions provided for temperature and pressure.

Please tell us what settings for temp / psi you are using and if you are peeling hot or cold?

Lots of folks here with the smarts to help you out with some additional direction.
 
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